Renovation Report – Behind the Scenes

Welcome to Renovation Report, the first installment in a monthly series of blog posts to provide progress reports on Brooklyn Historical Society’s (BHS) current renovation and to highlight the fascinating features of our landmark building. Designed by architect George Post and opened in 1881, Brooklyn Historical Society’s building was ahead of its time, and will be once again.

BHS trustees and staff view the ceiling restoration of the ground floor event space

BHS is midway through construction to renovate the first floor and lower level.  We are thrilled to see physical changes unfold! We remain OPEN  during this construction period, and the new spaces are slated to open in fall 2013 in conjunction with the launch of BHS’s 150th anniversary celebrations.  We want to let you know what’s happening, what to expect, share some of the amazing architectural details of our building, and give you an insider’s view into the behind-the-scenes work that is underway.

The newly configured spaces will include 2,200 square feet of new galleries for exhibitions and create a classroom for student and teacher programs. We are also restoring the historic entrance to the building and will provide an exciting, new welcome desk and Brooklyn specific gift shop. These updates will improve visitor flow through the building with better ADA access. Central to the project is enlivening our main event space for public programs and space rentals  by restoring the space to the full breadth of the original auditorium.  It will once again accommodate up to 200 people seated, highlight the detailed wood ceiling with updated lighting, and  offer a fully equipped audio-visual system. All of these changes to the building modernize the spaces for current and future use while respecting the magnificence of our landmark building. View the new designs here.

Cross-section of the newly designed spaces on BHS’s first floor and lower level

Please check back next month for the latest update.  Or view the whole series in our blog category, Landmark Building.




About Janice

Janice Monger is Associate Director of Brooklyn Historical Society. She is overseeing the current renovation of BHS's first floor and lower level and is director of the exhibition program, including the Public Perspectives Exhibition Series.
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3 Responses to Renovation Report – Behind the Scenes

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